How to Include Bullet Points in a Cover Letter
The purpose of a cover letter is to persuade hiring managers that you’re a good fit for the job. Think of it as being like a sales pitch: while a resume outlines the entirety of your related work experience and skills, your cover letter gives the highlights. The goal is to grab readers' attention and convince them that your application should make it to the next round.
Of course, hiring managers and recruiters are busy. One study found that recruiters spend an average of just six seconds reviewing a resume before moving it to the “yes” or “no” pile. Adding bullets to your cover letter can help you make the most of those six seconds, highlighting your relevant experience and matching it to the job listing’s requirements.
Best of all, bullets show your experience and skills in a way that stands out immediately. Readers may skim through your opening paragraph, but their eyes will automatically pause when they see a bulleted list of qualifications. There's something about the white space and the formatting of bullet points that's very eye-catching.
How to Include Bullet Points in a Cover Letter
Start your cover letter with an introductory paragraph that explains why you are writing. Then, when explaining your related experience, use a bullet for each of your job qualifications.
Each bullet point should include a concise phrase or sentence that begins with an action word; you can include a period at the end of each sentence. Avoid having too much text for each bullet point; once the text following a bullet point spreads to three lines, it might make more sense in paragraph form.
Use simple bullets such as circles, dots, hyphens, or small squares. Avoid other symbols that might look too confusing or may not upload properly when you apply for jobs online. Keeping it simple will avoid funky formatting in your cover letter.
To generate your bullet points, match your qualifications to the job description. Include the skills that are the closest match to the job.
You might also include keywords related to the job, but not specifically listed in the job listing. To figure out which keywords to include, scan job postings for other, related positions at other companies, or scan this list of skills to include in a cover letter or resume.
As well as listing skills, you can use bullet points to convey accomplishments (e.g., "Drove record-breaking sales numbers.").
The first paragraph of your letter should include information on why you are writing.
Refer to the position you are applying for and tell the hiring manager where you found the job listing. If you were recommended by a contact, now’s the time to mention it.
Next, provide a brief introduction, followed by the bullets.
- The middle section of your cover letter should include what you have to offer.
- Mention how your qualifications match the job you are applying for.
- Highlight your most relevant experience and accomplishments.
- Show the employer why you're a great match.
- Be selective: you don’t need to include every skill and achievement, no matter how impressive they might be. Restrict yourself to qualifications that match the job description and show that you’re an outstanding fit for the position.
Finish your cover letter with a closing paragraph and your signature.
Tips for Writing Bullet Points
When you’re writing your bullet points, don’t copy from your resume or from the employer’s job posting. Take the time to write unique statements for each, based on your qualifications for the job. Include 3-6 bullet points listing your expertise and accomplishments.
Remember that cover letters are intended to persuade. As you write, focus on making the case that you’re the best candidate for the job.
Once you’ve set up your letter with an introduction, bullets, and a closing, you can simply swap out the bullet points when you write each new cover letter. It is a quick and easy way to customize your job application letters for each position you apply for.
Cover Letter Bulleted List Examples
- Manage company communications including extensive social media experience.
- Experience with C+, UNIX, Shell, and Python scripting.
- Work with students to educate and prepare them for careers using career advising techniques, career development strategies, and career preparation techniques.
- Experience as a teacher’s aide in elementary school classrooms.
- Certified human resources professional with extensive recruiting and hiring experience.
- Manage complex projects from start to completion while ensuring client satisfaction and meeting all scheduled dates.
Email Cover Letter Sample With Bullets
Subject Line: Sales Manager Job Application from J. Fernandez
Dear Mr. Williams:
It was with much interest that I learned, through your recent advertisement on Indeed.com, about Hamilton Motors’ current search for a Sales Manager. Please accept the attached résumé as an expression of my deep interest in accelerating the profitability of your new car sales department.
As an accomplished sales producer with 8 years’ experience in automotive sales management for two dealerships in Greenville and Spartanburg Counties, I have consistently demonstrated leadership and motivational talents that produced steady YOY growth throughout my tenures. A few of the credentials I bring to the table include:
- Consistently meeting ambitious monthly sales forecasts, exceeding profit objectives by 32% in 2016, by 49% in 2017, and by 58% in 2018.
- Proven effectiveness recruiting, onboarding, and training retail sales teams that have led their territories in production from 2014 through the present, capturing top CAR sales awards each year.
- More than doubling customer traffic by hiring dedicated automotive internet sales team members.
- Introducing stringent inventory control policies that reduced overhead by 40% while maintaining an optimal range of vehicle types.
As a self-driven and charismatic sales manager, my “super hero” talent is my ability to inspire others to own their sales quota responsibilities and enthusiastically work as a team to smash ambitious sales targets. Excited at the prospect of bringing these strengths to Hamilton Motors, I thank you for your consideration and look forward to your response.
3089 Montgomery Avenue
Greeneville, SC 29603